[Samba] [OT] Fyodor terminates SCO nmap rights -- how about Samba?

Leonardo Boselli leo at dicea.unifi.it
Sat Feb 28 09:36:57 GMT 2004

On Sat, 28 Feb 2004, Jim Shanks wrote:
> > On Fri, 27 Feb 2004 17:43:51 -0500
> > Rashkae <rashkae at tigershaunt.com> wrote:
> > My question is this: by declaring the GPL as invalid, isn't that
> > non-acceptance of the license, which in turn invalidates your right to
> > distribute all GPL software?  (SCO does distribute Samba in its products,
> > while
> > at the same time they have a document on their website declaring the GPL
> > invalid;
> > See: http://www.thescogroup.com/copyright/ for details)
> > products, although IANAL.
> Actually, didn't SCO make the arguement that any GPL'd software should
> actually be declared "public domain"?  If that's so, doesn't allowing them
> to continue using the software under the GPL put the copyright at risk?

In their site they write (these are not THEIR words !):
 "Congress shall have Power [t]o promote the Progress of Science and
useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the
exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries."
Thi later cite a sentence that want to show they are right. The sentence
is about extension of terms, that is how much "limited time" is excluseve
right !
The only things that GPL license differ than a "normal" copyrighted work
are: 1. the license does not "expire" 2. The license force you to license
derived works with the same license.
There are the points that SCO try use to show it is illegal.
 1. : Yes, they are right on this point, but -apart that this would
apply to any of the computer licenses- this would only have the effect to
set a limit on the time it would apply, and since they see "right" to
increase the spanm of tiome this would not be a problem now, and for may
years to come [incidentally: each update of programs would shift further
later expiring !]. The fact that whitin a certain time it would become PD,
as many patents, should not worry much. 
 2. you have "exclusive" rights ... isn't ? So exclusive right mean also
that you can license with the condition that teh reciver must
sublicense only under GPL. Also, the GOL is not mandatory nor exclusive,
since you can have dual licensing [see MySQL ] so if you are not happy
with GPL you have other ways ....

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